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A week without fun, then I turned 21...

Well, I know we all have busy lives, and I don't expect mine is any more interesting than another but if you'd like to hear about the two weeks or so leading up to my 21st birthday, then away we go.

The weekend of September 29th I drove down with my friend Sam to work at a 5k charity run in La Mirada. We were employees of a company called Eternal Timing, a subcontractor of TriCalifornia Events. This was my first time working for them, but Sam has done lots of events over the past years, and basically it was a small event so we were expecting a hassle-free weekend. Boy were we in for it.

Our duties for the contract were simple: we were to set up timing mats (basically large rubber mats infused with copper wire that function as both antennae and receivers for RF-ID chips), assign timing chips (RF-IDs attached to a runners shoe), and time the event. Once the event was over, we should have compiled and processed the data, then posted it online for the athletes to view. Easy peazy.

Ok, I'll give you the short version, but that is not what happened that weekend. We got there on Saturday and there was no one at the event site (a regional park). Great. So we call the event organizer and find our there is no one showing up until the next morning, and that we will have two or so hours to set up and check out chips to 500+ athletes running in the timed 5k and a kids 1mi run. Unrealistic expectations at best. So we go try to check into our hotel and find that the organizers never made the reservation. Luckily we got a room in the hotel and just had them pay for it. The rest of the night was spent waiting for various information, when we should have been sleeping so we could get up at 4:30. Anyway, it was a long night. Luckily our company pays for everything so we had nothing to worry about concerning food and such.

The event day was even worse, and for my own mental health I'd rather not relive it. I'll just say that its amazing that there was a race at all. I'm not even sure they raised any money for lupus, which is the cause this event was fund raising for. Our attempts to salvage the chaos the ensued were not in vain, but needless to say that by noon we were itching to get our equipment back in the truck and on our way home. But not before a little lunch.

So we stopped and ate some great Dim Sum with Sam's aunt and uncle who live in the area. It was a great and authentic Chinese meal, and afterwards we hit up the 99 Ranch market for good Asian groceries (tea, rice, and such). But then we came out to the parking lot and found that our company truck had been broken into, and lots of our stuff had been taken. After calling the sheriff and filing a report, we proceeded to drive all the way back to SLO missing a window. Fun fun.

So we get back about 5 hours later than expected, eat dinner and pass out. What a weekend. But the bad karma was not over for me. That Tuesday I rode my bike downtown with my friend Doug to get some lunch (we had a couple of hours between classes). I got a puncture somewhere along the way and when we came out to get our bikes i had a flat tire. So I had to walk home and be late to class. Basically my theory was that I had some kind of karmic disaster and somehow was accumulating other peoples misfortune or something.

Anyway I'm feeling better now because the sheriffs department recovered some of my stuff that got stolen, including my computer, as well as all of the company's stolen property (two laptops). I just turned 21 and had a great weekend, so I guess I've had all the bad karma I can in one sitting. Now life is almost back to normal and I have class at 8am tomorrow, so I'll cut this short and hit the sack. I'll leave you with an image of my 21 year old self and my birthday souvenir: my literstein mug (note the lederhosen and commemorative button). Cheers!


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Where's the photo of you in your leather shorts?

Also, congratulations! 21 is a good age. But always remember, "Never volunteer," unless the food is good.

You didn't say who was going to pick up the mats after the race!

Hi, Jim - Happy 21st Birthday! Hope you have a great year! Love, Aunt Amy and Uncle Pete

I'm sorry that I didn't get to write sooner, but things have been crazy here too. I've been sick and still haven't put my apartment together! Hey, I saw that kind of mug and mug cozy at a german place in Las Vegas! I still have a small gift for you...I'll mail it out tomorrow. Love you! Mommy

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